When you describe something as inspiring, how often do you mean, “Wow, good for that person. They did something great”? But does it actually inspire you to change your life as well? Too often we think of inspiration as something that makes us feel good, or restores our faith in humanity. But it doesn’t have a direct effect on our life.
However, the word “inspire” comes from the Latin word that means “to inflame” or “blow into.” Much like blowing flame over a low fire can make it grow, inspiration can fan a flame that can change the world.
Emily Jaminet, a regular Morning Air® contributor, recently shared her insights on inspiration, and how the way we seek out and respond to divine inspiration can completely transform our daily lives.
Emily said, “Our desire is to be inspired by Christ, so that ultimately we can be transformed by Christ. So it’s that simple phrase: be inspired to be transformed. I like to think of this simple phrase, because it really helps me as a busy mom in ministry.”
Emily pointed out that inspiration is not meant to simply make us feel good, but to help shine the light of Christ to those around us. She said, “There’s a reason for that inspiration. It’s not something we just want to hold within ourselves. But really, we are most like Christ when we are his hands and his feet, and we’re serving and loving others. That is truly a privilege.”
Often when we think of inspiring stories we think of viral videos, and think that we aren’t in the same situation as those people so we don’t have the opportunity to offer love, support, hope, peace, or forgiveness. But Emily encouraged listeners to listen to the ways the Lord is calling them to share his love with others, even if it doesn’t look like someone else’s inspiring act.
“The Lord is not calling Mrs. Jaminet to be my next door neighbor, or just like this other mom two streets over,” she said. “He’s calling each one of us to be fully alive, to be ourselves, made in the image and likeness of God.”
So where can we find this inspiration when we feel completely uninspired, when it seems that whatever we do doesn’t matter to others? Emily suggested looking at salvation history, and at the fact that over and over the Lord has used ordinary people to do extraordinary things.
“The lives of the saints, our brothers and sisters in Christ, even reading the Gospels every day, that is such an opportunity to receive that inspiration,” she said. “And then to know that you can be transformed. You can grow in holiness.”
If you want to be inspired and transformed by Christ, that starts with having a relationship with him. Our faith is not an ideology, but a relationship. And so carving out time to deepen that relationship and listen to what the Lord is saying is a vital step to experiencing the inspiration of the Lord.
“I know that it takes a lot to incorporate that morning prayer, when we get on our knees and open our Bibles, which I really encourage each one of your listeners to do. But you will absolutely be blessed. And you will start to see that is your daily food, to go forth and do everything that you are called to do.”
“That’s how we break that cycle of resentment, or depression, or anxiety, or just the blahs of Monday morning. It’s knowing that God has a beautiful purpose for you on this day, and he wants to use you to live out the mission of the Church. For me, as a busy mom, there’s a lot of tasks I have to do that I might not want to do. But with Christ’s love, it truly is transformative as to how I can do that task at hand.”